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'Lower Hutt welcomes $15mil investment towards Eastern Bays Shared Path'

Contributor:
Fuseworks Media
Fuseworks Media

Lower Hutt Mayor Campbell Barry has welcomed the Government’s announcement this morning that it will invest $15 million towards the Eastern Bays Shared Path.

The shared path will create a safe walking and cycling route and connect communities along Lower Hutt’s Eastern Bays, from Point Howard right through to Eastbourne.

Mayor Barry says he is absolutely delighted the Government will invest $15 million of ‘shovel ready’ funding towards the project.

"This is a big deal for Lower Hutt, and particularly the Eastern Bays whose residents have long told us this project is a priority. With Government support, people can expect to see shovels in the ground early next year, with construction planned to continue through until 2026," Campbell Barry said.

"Once completed, it will be a major upgrade from the current infrastructure which discourages walking and cycling. Pedestrians and cyclists are forced to use the road shoulder, which is dangerous and non-existent in some parts. If we want people to take up active modes of transport, it’s high-quality infrastructure like the Eastern Bays Shared Path which will encourage that.

"Ultimately the announcement today gives the project certainty to move ahead at pace. While it has been on Council’s books for a number of years, a funding shortfall has meant there had been some delay and uncertainty about its future.

Deputy Mayor and Harbour Ward Councillor Tui Lewis says the fast tracking of the Shared Path couldn’t come soon enough for the local community, who have waited years for this news.

"The Shared Path is one of the most common issues raised with me by local people over the years. There are major safety concerns from the people of the Harbour Ward, so from my perspective, this was an obvious choice to put this up for shovel-ready funding" said Tui Lewis.

"I’m really happy to see their appetite for safe local transport met by the Government. It’s important that we provide our commuters more options for getting out and about in our city and make sure our spaces are safe for those people who are using them."

The Eastern Bays Shared Path is the second Hutt City Council project to receive ‘shovel ready’ funding, following the Prime Minister’s announcement last week that the Government will invest $27 million towards the rebuild of Naenae Pool.

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